Palm City Estate Planning Process

When you understand the Palm City estate planning process, the idea of creating an estate plan becomes more manageable. If you already have an estate plan, it is a good idea to review the plan with an experienced estate planning attorney periodically to make any necessary adjustments as needs and family dynamics change.

Determining Assets and Liabilities in Palm City

An individual or couple creating an estate plan should inventory all assets. It is a good idea to create a list that includes account numbers and names and contact information for any advisors who work with a particular asset, whether the assets are shares in a mutual fund, real estate holdings, or other property. In addition to accounting for all assets, it is essential to make a list of liabilities as well. The estate will need to settle any outstanding debts before assets can be distributed to beneficiaries.

The Palm City estate planning process should also include an assessment of goals. This can include providing care for minor children or family members with special needs. Goals also might involve a family business or support for a favorite charity. Individuals should also consider goals for their personal needs so that they can put a plan in place for someone to make decisions on their behalf for financial or health care issues.

Protection for the Future with an Estate Plan

After ascertaining assets, liabilities, and goals, then it is time to develop a plan to protect those assets and meet those goals. An experienced estate planning lawyer can help create a comprehensive plan. Among other things, an estate plan could:

  • Set up trusts to reduce tax liability
  • Name guardians for minor children
  • Establish a plan for business succession
  • Provide advance directives regarding healthcare decisions
  • Set up powers of attorney for financial decision making in the event of incapacity
  • Establish trusts to provide ongoing support for family members or to protect inheritances left to a spouse or even adult children

The provisions of an estate plan will be unique to the individual or family creating the plan. An estate plan can do much more than simply determine how assets will be divided. A thoughtful estate plan can provide protection and peace of mind for both the person creating the plan and family and friends.

Issues to Keep in Mind

For estate plans to have the desired effect, it is necessary to ensure that every provision is documented appropriately according to legal requirements. This is another area where assistance from a knowledgeable attorney can prove invaluable.

It is also important to consider the choice of individuals or entities who will have the authority to carry out the estate plan. As part of the Palm City estate planning process, you will need to choose an executor or personal representative to administer your estate, and you may need to designate a guardian for children and a trustee to manage the assets in a trust. While many people choose trusted family members to fill these roles, it may be preferable in some cases to use professionals such as attorneys or bank trust companies who understand the fiduciary duties involved and how to comply with legal requirements.

Get Help with the Palm City Estate Planning Process

An experienced attorney in Palm City can guide you through the estate planning process to create a plan that meets your needs. To discuss your options, call today.

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